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Professional Team

The Hebrew at the Center team consists of professionals passionate about Hebrew, second language acquisition and Jewish education writ large, experienced at working in a wide range of educational settings. Collectively, each person on the team brings her or his own Hebrew journey and field experience, personal values, and own special talents and interest to ensure a well-rounded team where the whole is greater than the sum of the parts.

Team members have academic, accreditation, and professional training in the following areas:

  • Curricular design
  • Assessment & evaluation
  • Early childhood education
  • Special education
  • Proficiency approach
  • Language planning
  • Sociolinguistics
  • Identity formation
  • Early childhood education
  • Coaching & mentoring
  • Onboarding novice teachers
  • Curricular integration
  • Educational theory
  • Change management
  • Mission & vision development
  • Lay & professional dynamics
Our staff are also experienced professionals, recognized for their expertise & knowledge in the field:
  • Served as senior leaders and executives at Jewish day schools and national organizations
  • Frequent presenters at Jewish educational conferences
  • Worked with more than 100 schools to strengthen their Hebrew programs

 

  • Publish in academic and professional journals
  • Leaders at second-language conferences at the regional, national and international level
  • Partner in creating  the Avant STAMP assessment tool for Hebrew
  • Associated with Prizmah, CASJE, Jewish Interactive, TalentEd, and others
  • Helped found the  Council for Hebrew Language and Culture in North America
  • Consult on Hebrew immersion programs such as charter schools and day camps

 

Whether responding to the immediacy of challenges surfaced during pandemics to the sustained multi-year projects such as Leading in Hebrew, the Hebrew at the Center team is nimble, intentional, persistent, and effective. Lifelong learners, our staff believes that Hebrew is an essential building block of a rich Jewish identity, connecting individuals to Jewish sources, values, history, peoplehood, and Israel

Leadership Team

RABBI ANDREW ERGAS
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
DR. ESTY GROSS
Chief of Staff and Director of Education
TAL GALE

CHIEF HEBREW ADVOCACY OFFICER

AMY BEN-DOV
HEBREW AND INFORMAL EDUCATION MANAGER
DR. RINA KREITMAN
DIRECTOR OF PROFESSIONAL LEARNING
LIAT KADOSH

DIRECTOR OF DAY SCHOOL SERVICES

ERIN ROBBINS
DIRECTOR OF MARKETING AND COMMUNICATIONS
LIYA KAHAN
DIRECTOR OF INSTITUTIONAL ADVANCEMENT

National Staff

PAULA LEVINE
PROJECT COORDINATOR
LEAH PICKHOLZ
EXECUTIVE ADMINISTRATOR & BUSINESS OFFICE MANAGER
DR. CINDY DOLGIN
DATA MANAGER AND ANALYST

Advisors & Senior Consultants

DR. JEREMY BENSTEIN
SENIOR CONSULTANT & SICHA BLOGGER
FRIEDA ROBINS
ADVISOR – EARLY CHILDHOOD
LORI SAGARIN
SENIOR CONSULTANT, HEBREW & PART-TIME SETTINGS

Coaches

VERED GOLDSTEIN
COACH
HAMUTAL KEINAN
COACH
ARIELA NEHEMNE
COACH
ORIT SHAKARGHI
COACH

Join Hebrew teachers, Hebrew leaders, and other school leaders for an intensive, virtual conference on Sunday, April 3, 11:30 – 3:30 EDT. 

Click here for more information and to register

RABBI ANDREW ERGAS

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER

Bringing over twenty-five years of involvement in Jewish education and leadership, Rabbi Andrew Ergas has served as the Executive Director of the Shames JCC on the Hudson and in similar role at the Jewish Community Project Downtown (JCP). Andrew also served for seven years as Head of School at Beit Rabban Day School on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. In the past, he served as Executive Director of the Association of Reform Zionists of America (ARZA), as a Director of the Union for Reform Judaism’s Youth Division, as a resident and day camp director for both Young Judaea and for JCC’s, and as an organizational management consultant.

Andrew was ordained in Jerusalem by the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion, and holds master’s degrees in nonprofit management and in Hebrew literature. A graduate of the Harvard Graduate School of Education certificate program, Andrew is also a doctoral candidate in education at the Jewish Theological Seminary, with a research focus on Hebrew, identity and pedagogy.

A frequent lecturer and writer on Israel and Diaspora relations, Jewish history and effective change management within organizational life, Rabbi Ergas is recognized as a leading speaker and educator in the Jewish community and beyond. He is active in his home congregation and serves in a volunteer capacity as the Board Chair for the Council on Hebrew Language and Culture in North America. Andrew enjoys playing guitar, great movies, and spending time outdoors. Andrew lives in Brooklyn, N.Y. with his wife Jennifer and has three young adult sons, Erez, Natan and Ari.

DR. ESTY GROSS

CHIEF OF STAFF & DIRECTOR OF EDUCATION

Prior to joining the team at HATC, Dr. Gross served for five years as the Education Director for Hebrew Studies, Global Division for the Center for Educational Technology (CET), a leading provider of Hebrew curriculum and professional development for the Jewish educational field worldwide. She has worked within academia as a former Associate Coordinator of DeLeT L’Ivrit and currently serves as a Visiting Lecturer at DeLeT Lehoraat Ivrit at Hebrew Union College and as an Adjunct Professor in the MAT-TESOL program for the University of Southern California. Esty has over twenty-five years of field experience, starting as an English teacher in Israel, and upon moving to the United States, as a Hebrew teacher, Department Chair, Curriculum Specialist, Professional Development Consultant, and Director in leading Jewish day schools in the Los Angeles area.

A former Co-Chair of the National Association for Hebrew Teachers (NAHeT) and a member of the Council for Hebrew Language and Culture in North America, Esty has presented in countless schools and conferences and has written numerous articles, authored and co-authored textbooks, and is currently in the process of publishing two books on Hebrew pedagogy and equitable language education.

Esty received her doctorate in Educational Leadership at the University of Southern California, holds an M.A. in Management and Leadership in Education from Tel Aviv University, a Coordinator and Master Teacher Certificate from Hebrew College, and a B.A. in English Linguistics as well as a Teacher’s Diploma for Teaching English as a Second Language from Bar Ilan University.

TAL GALE

CHIEF HEBREW ADVOCACY OFFICER

Tal has diverse experience in Jewish education across North America and in Israel. She has worked in both formal and informal educational settings across a broad range of audiences with a focus on educational leadership and Hebrew language acquisition. Tal has a BA and MA in Hebrew Literature and Hebrew Language Instruction from Brandeis University where she studied with Dr. Vardit Ringvald.  She has also pursued post-graduate studies at Tel Aviv University in Hebrew Literature and at UCLA in Educational Leadership. 

From 2010-2014 she served as North American Program and Education Director of the Diller Teen Fellows Program where she managed local teen leadership programs in collaboration with 10 North American Jewish Federations (SF, Baltimore, Boston, LA, NJ, Montreal, Pittsburgh, Toronto, Miami and Chicago) and promoted partnerships between local programs and their respective Israeli partner communities.  In this role, Tal created a national program manual including policies, procedures and curriculum, designed and facilitated annual professional development programs for national and international staff and community leaders, and designed tools for national and international program evaluation for 20 participating communities to increase program impact and contribute to the field of Jewish Peoplehood.

Most recently Tal has served as a consultant to Gideon Hausner Jewish Day School in Palo Alto were she provided professional development and mentoring for Hebrew language teachers and increased integration of Hebrew school-wide to strengthen Jewish identity development.

Tal’s work includes publications on the topic of Jewish Peoplehood and contributions to the Peoplehood Education Toolkit, a Center for Jewish Peoplehood Education and a UJA Federation initiative.  In addition to her work, Tal serves on the Board of Directors of the Council of Hebrew Language and Culture in North America.

AMY BEN-DOV

DIRECTOR OF HEBREW AND INFORMAL EDUCATION

Amy Ben-Dov has nearly 30 years of experience in the world of Jewish Education.  After graduating from the University of Wisconsin with a Bachelor of Science, she made aliya.  

Amy was licensed by Israel’s Ministry of Tourism as a Tour Guide and has spent many years as an educator throughout the country. She then attended Hebrew University and has a Master’s Degree in Contemporary Jewry (Yahadut Zmanenu)

After many years of guiding, Amy went on to teach and coordinate at NFTY’s High School in Israel program, as well serving as the Director of Education for all of NFTY’s  Israel programs.

In the last decade, Amy has worked on program development,  and guide training, especially during her tenure as the CEO of Israel Seminar, a boutique travel company. After leaving Israel Seminar, Amy and her husband started their own travel consultancy, and Amy both guided clients throughout the country as well as doing all travel planning.

Most recently, Amy has trained the next generation of licensed tour guides as the coordinator of the Israel School of Tourism’s Jerusalem course. During the year of the pandemic, Amy has successfully created innovative virtual tours of Israel.  

Outside of work, Amy enjoys the outdoor life and finding new adventures to experience all over Israel and the world.  Her friends can always count on her to suggest a great way to spend a few hours or even a few days. Amy and her husband, Gadi, have two children, Niv and Ori, and are about to move from their current home in Modiin, back to their true love, Jerusalem.

DR. RINA KREITMAN

DIRECTOR OF PROFESSIONAL LEARNING

Dr. Rina Kreitman is a lecturer at the university of Kent, UK. Prior to her current role, she served as a research associate and a second language acquisition specialist at the National Foreign Language Center at the University of Maryland.
In addition to phonetics, phonology and morphology of Hebrew, her work explores applied linguistics, language acquisition and pedagogy of Hebrew and heritage learners. Previously, Rina directed Emory University’s Hebrew program, where she also lectured as faculty in Jewish Studies and Linguistics. Subsequently, she held a similar position at Columbia University and also lectured at University College London. Rina has published work on Modern Hebrew linguistics and pedagogy in books and journals, presented at numerous conferences and trained college lecturers and Hebrew teachers in pedagogical practices. She is a native/heritage speaker in Hebrew, English and Russian, with additional skills in French, Spanish and Italian. A graduate of Tel Aviv University in linguistics, Rina earned her master’s and doctorate at Cornell University, where her dissertation focused on Hebrew phonetics and phonology.

LIAT KADOSH

DIRECTOR OF DAY SCHOOL SERVICES

Liat has over 25 years of experience teaching Hebrew to students and adults in Israel and the United States. She has been involved with HATC since its founding in 2007 and is a member of HATC’s Educational Leadership Team (ELT). Liat directs the LIH-Leading in Hebrew project and has worked with multiple schools throughout North America and served as the coordinator of the Atlanta Regional Hebrew Initiative from 2010 to 2014. Living in Atlanta, Georgia, Liat served as the Director of Hebrew at Atlanta’s Jewish Academy (2YO-12th grade). Previously, Liat was the Hebrew Language Director at The Epstein Middle School, Hebrew Language Coordinator at the Yeshiva High School of Atlanta, a Hebrew language instructor at Emory University in Atlanta and a member in the SATII Hebrew subject test committee of the College Board. Prior to moving to Atlanta, Liat taught Hebrew, wrote curriculum, and coordinated Hebrew language instruction support for students that learn differently( LD) at Gann Academy, in Waltham, MA. In Israel, Liat served as the Director of the Ulpan at the Givat Washington High School campus and as co-director of the high- School. She holds a BA, Teaching License, and Educational Leadership Diploma from Bar Ilan University and an MA in Jewish Education from Siegal College of Judaic Studies, Ohio. Liat is an ACTFL-certified OPI tester, and the founder of HHH: Hador H’bah Hebrew ; booklets to enhance Hebrew reading for students that learn Hebrew as a second language.
ERIN ROBBINS

DIRECTOR OF MARKETING AND COMMUNICATIONS

Erin is a nonprofit professional with a passion for mission-driven work. She graduated from the University of Oregon and started her career in San Francisco, gaining an in-depth overview of the third sector and both program and event management. After a position in service learning in Montana, Erin moved to Israel and worked at the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) in Jerusalem until she returned stateside. Over the next ten years, Erin started a writing business and volunteered with several local nonprofit organizations. In her last position, Erin worked Director of Communications at Camp Yavneh in Massachusetts and was a co-chair with the Association for Independent Jewish Camps (AIJC), helping facilitate the marketing and social media cohort. Erin worked year-round, including three summers at camp, until Covid, and then launched a marketing firm, Erin Robbins Creative.

In addition to her professional experience, Erin’s expertise also includes Israel education and American Jewish life. After living in Jewish communities of all sizes, Erin’s primary interests include Jewish identity and culture, Jews in small communities, and modern Israel life. She completed a Master’s in Middle East Studies from Ben Gurion University and is currently completing her second Master’s in Israel Education at the George Washington University, in collaboration with the iCenter. In her spare time, Erin is writing a book about modern Israeli life and discovering new sites and food in Israel.

Liya Kahan

DIRECTOR OF INSTITUTIONAL ADVANCEMENT

Liya has over a decade of experience working in development within higher education and the Jewish non-profit sector. Prior to joining HATC, Liya worked at Columbia University as Senior Associate Director where she managed a team and was responsible for all fundraising efforts from Columbia’s undergraduate recent alumni. Before working at Columbia, Liya served as Associate Director of the Annual Campaign at the Jewish Community Project of Lower Manhattan, where she worked closely with the Board of Directors and Development Committee to achieve the organization’s fundraising goals. Liya began her career in development during her time as a student at Brandeis University, where she worked in different roles within Brandeis’ Department of Institutional Advancement. 
 
Liya holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology from Brandeis University and Masters of Science in Nonprofit Management from Columbia University. 
 
Liya was born in Jerusalem, Israel and grew up abroad, living in Ethiopia, Swaziland, Myanmar, and Italy. She moved to the United States to attend Brandeis University. Liya currently lives in Tenafly, NJ with her husband, Ross, and two young children, Levi and Rafael. 

PAULA LEVINE

PROJECT COORDINATOR

Paula has held key leadership roles with Temple Israel of Natick , United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism and the Bureau of Jewish Education. At Temple Israel she has held the position of President, Executive Vice-President, and chair of several committees. Paula has been Education Vice-President of the New England Region of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism and for a number of years sat on the National Board of Directors. She was President of the Boston Bureau of Jewish Education and a member of the Board of Directors of Combined Jewish Philanthropies and maintained a seat on the Family Education Task Force. She brings the same organizational skills to Hebrew At The Center as she did to her synagogue, the Conservative movement and Jewish education for more than thirty-five years. Paula is the mother of one day-school graduate daughter and Savta to two grandchildren, both of whom attend day school in Washington, D.C
paulal@hebrewatthecenter.org

LEAH PICKHOLZ
Executive And Business Office Assistant
Leah joined Hebrew at the Center in 2018. She assists the CEO, and supports her with board-related matters. She also attends to bookkeeping, HR matters, and support for HATC development program. Prior to joining HATC, Leah worked as a substitute teacher at the Hopkinton school system, fulfilling her passion to teach and nurture children. For over 20 years Leah worked with her husband as the office administrator and marketing director at their music production studio. Leah helped organize numerous benefit events and recitals and attended to the administrative and financial duties of the studio’s office. Leah grew up in Tel Aviv Israel. She served in the IDF as a communication specialist. Leah attended Tel-Aviv University where she earned a B.A, majoring in Political Science. While attending school, she taught music and was a Hebrew tutor and continued to do so when she first moved to the United States. Besides Hebrew and Israeli culture, Leah is passionate about Jazz and Classical music and loves to read. Her “guilty pleasure” is spy mystery novels i.e. books by Daniel Silva, Barry Eisler, and others.

DR. CINDY DOLGIN, EdD

DATA MANAGER AND ANALYST

Since high school, Cindy’s personal mission statement has been, “I am a servant of K’lal Yisrael.” Although her natural inclination was to be an educator, Cindy also wanted to make Aliyah and be financially self-sufficient, so she set out to develop tech skills that would be transferable to establishing a career in Israel. Cindy’s first career was in database management and systems analysis, first in banking, then in high tech, and mostly in Israel. Cindy has since had a long and fulfilling second career in Jewish education, based in New York, teaching children, teachers, and adult learners, and leading departments, curriculum development projects, divisions, and schools.

In addition to being certified in Systems Design and Analysis by the Sivan Institute in Tel Aviv, Cindy holds a BA in Economics/Management Information Systems and Near Eastern Studies from University of Michigan, an MA in Jewish Education from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, and a doctorate in Religion and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University. Her area of doctoral research was in teacher learning and professional culture. Cindy began learning Hebrew in earnest while in college, studied for one year at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, and over the years returned again and again to Ulpan and to a well-known Hebrew language tutor in Tel Aviv, in order to become fluent and proficient in all aspects of Biblical, Rabbinic and modern Hebrew.

Having grown up in an actively involved Reform Jewish family with strong roots in synagogue, youth group, and Jewish camping, Cindy has been a teacher and leader in every aspect of Jewish congregational and day schools across the religious spectrum, as well as in the Ramah camping movement. Her first career in systems design and analysis always informed Cindy’s work, and she became the unofficial “guardian of the data” at every school in which she worked. Cindy served for seven years as Head of School at the Schechter School of Long Island, with a staff and faculty of 100 professionals, teaching and nurturing hundreds of students from Kindergarten through 12th grade, until they would head off to elite colleges, universities, the US or Israeli military, or gap year programs in North America and Israel. Cindy is so proud that her own children and all SSLI alumni step into the world fortified with powerful learning and leadership habits, Jewish identities, and Hebrew language skills.

Early in the pandemic, Cindy returned to the physical and virtual classroom as a Jewish day school teacher, teaching middle school English at Ramaz and elementary Hebrew and Judaic studies at Schechter School of Long Island. In her spare time, Cindy studies Daf Yomi, tends to her garden, creates new recipes in her kitchen, and frequently visits her children and adorable grandson in Israel.

DR. JEREMY BENSTEIN
SENIOR CONSULTANT & SICHA BLOGGER

Dr. Jeremy Benstein is an educator, author, and Hebrew lover. He holds a BA in linguistics from Harvard, a master’s degree in Judaic studies from the Schechter Institute in Jerusalem, and a doctorate in cultural anthropology from Hebrew University. He grew up in the Midwest and moved to Israel over 35 years ago. Along the way, he helped found the Heschel Center for Sustainability in Tel Aviv.
He is currently the managing editor of 929-English (Tanakh: Age-Old Text, New Perspectives – www.929.org.il) and lives in Zichron Yaakov with his wife, Prof. Annabel Herzog, five children, two cats, and many books. He is the author of two books. The first, The Way Into Judaism and the Environment (Jewish Lights, 2006), is an outgrowth of his work on Jewish studies and environmental issues. His most recent one, Hebrew Roots, Jewish Routes: A Tribal Language In a Global World (Behrman House, 2019) is a labor of love for and about the Hebrew language and its role in Jewish history, identity, and peoplehood. He has written and lectured widely on the topic of Hebrew and Jewish peoplehood and identity in North America and Israel.

FRIEDA ROBINS
Advisor – Early Childhood

Frieda was the Lead Educator of Ma’alah, Early Childhood Hebrew Immersion Network at the William Davidson Graduate School of Jewish Education at the Jewish Theological Seminary, also funded by The Covenant Foundation. At JTS she had also directed a program of Judaic Enrichment for Early Childhood Educators. These pilot programs were later replicated in various educational settings throughout the country. Frieda has also served as Director of Early Childhood Programs at Camp Ramah of New England. Before joining JTS, Frieda taught at the New City Jewish Center for 16 years in the religious school, preschool and Hebrew for adults, and at Rockland Community College. She holds a Masters in Jewish Education from JTS and was a doctoral candidate in Jewish Education there. Her research interests include early childhood Jewish education and Hebrew language education and evaluation. Frieda concentrates on professional development for early childhood educators both in Hebrew proficiency education and assessment and in Judaic studies. She has published studies on the Hebrew language immersion program at Camp Ramah, Judaic enrichment as change agent and scholarly research in Hebrew Immersion. Frieda is an ELLOPA (Early Language Listening and Oral Proficiency Assessment) trainer and tester with CAL (Center for Applied Linguistics), specializing in Early Childhood Hebrew language assessment.

LORI SAGARIN
SENIOR CONSULTANT, HEBREW & PART-TIME SETTINGS

Lori B Sagarin, RJE, has served as the Director of Congregational Learning at Temple Beth Israel in Skokie, Illinois, since 1995. Lori completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin. After graduating from the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion with a Master’s of Jewish Education, she began her professional career in St. Louis, serving as the Director of the Commission on Reform Jewish Education. While in St. Louis, she met and married her husband, Rabbi Jim Sagarin. A former president of the National Association of Temple Educators (now ARJE), Lori is also the past president of the Chicago Association of Reform Jewish Educators. In addition to formerly serving on the advisory boards for NEXTBOOK and Project Esther, Lori is also member of the professional team at the iCenter, with a focus on Hebrew and Hebrew engagement. Since 1993, Lori has served on the faculty of OSRUI, URJ’s residential camp in Wisconsin, and currently serves as chair of its education committee. In 2009, Lori received an honorary doctorate in Jewish Religious Education for 25 years of dedicated service.

VERED GOLDSTEIN

COACH

Vered Goldstein received her Bachelor’s degree in education with honors from the Tel Aviv University and her Master’s degree in Special Educational Needs from Middlesex University in London. Having been chosen to participate in HATC’s TELEM program Vered received her Hebrew Teaching Advisor Certification in June 2018. demonstrated expertise, leadership and professionalism within their organizations and in the field. This an 18-month certification program, which focuses on preparing a cohort of lead educators from across North America to support institutions and initiatives that are committed to enhancing Hebrew language acquisition by using the proficiency-based approach.

In recent years Vered further advanced her education and experience completing courses such as CJE-JNTP Administrators Cohort (a 2 years course), Creating Cultures of Thinking (Harvard radiate School of Education and Project Zero), Modified Oral Proficiency Course and the Proficiency Approach. Vered also completed the “Tal-Am” training in Paris as well as took courses in Learning Management for Teachers working with pupils with emotional and behavioral difficulties. Her job experience includes working in Human resources at the Bezeq Company (1992-1996) in Israel, as well as teaching at the Wolfson Hillel Primary Day School in Southgate London (1997-2000). Since 2002, Ms. Goldstein has been working as a Hebrew and Judaic teacher at the Jewish Primary Day School, known today as the Milton-Gottesman Jewish day school of the Nation’s Capital. In addition to teaching, since 2013, Vered assumed the position of Hebrew and Judaic Instructional Leader for Early Childhood (Pre-K, K and 1st grade) at the school.

Among the awards Vered received over the years are “Excellence of the Dean” from the Tel Aviv University, “Excellent Employee” while working in Israel, and “Distinguish Soldier of the Base” while serving in the Israeli Defense Force. A native of Israel she became an American citizen in 2008 and is fluent in Hebrew as well as English.

HAMUTAL KEINAN
Coach

Hamutal Keinan was a member of the first HATC TELEM cohort and works as an HATC coach. She recently joined the staff of Luria Academy of Brooklyn. Previously, she served as a Hebrew and Bible teacher at the Epstein School in Atlanta, Georgia. Prior to teaching at Epstein, Hamutal worked as a Language Coordinator at the Balfour Elementary School in Tel Aviv, Israel.
In this role, she created curricula and new teaching materials, led professional development, and provided guidance to teachers.
Hamutal is a certified Educational Evaluator Specialist and holds a Master’s in Special Education.
She believes strongly in using assessment tools to evaluate students’ progress and their growth in acquiring a second language. She works hard to incorporate creative work into the process of learning Hebrew as a second language by incorporating music, poetry, digital learning into her classroom.

MERAV LEVY
COACH
Meirav Levy has been an educator for 24 years in her native Israel and in the U.S. A graduate of Kay College, she earned her teaching certificate from the Israeli’s Ministry of Education. For 13 years, Meirav taught grades 2 – 6 and served as the Language Coordinator at Amirim Elementary School in Israel. For the last 11 years, she taught Hebrew to grades 3 – 8 at the Seattle Jewish Community School. Over the last three years as a coordinator, she has also created the Hebrew curriculum and guided teachers to implement the proficiency approach. Meirav enjoys implementing graphic design and technology into learning units and interactive games. And in her curricula, she stresses connections between Hebrew, Jewish identity and culture.
ARIELA NEHEMNE

COACH

Ariela Nehemne was born and raised in Jerusalem, Israel and has been teaching for 24 years. She received her degree in psychology from the Open University in Jerusalem and studied at Ramat Gan College Hacker Software School, where she became a Microsoft Solution Certified Developer (MCSD).
In addition, in June of 2018, she completed HATC’s 18-month TELEM program and became an HATC coach working with schools throughout North America.
In Israel, Ariela was a teacher for children with special needs and hearing impairments and a technology teacher for elementary and middle school.
Ariela moved to Los Angeles in 2003 and studied early childhood education at the UCLA extension school.
Since 2003, Ariela has taught Hebrew and Judaic Studies at Pressman Academy and subsequently at Valley Beth Shalom Harold M. Schulweis Day School where she also served as the school’s Hebrew at the Center coordinator and teacher mentor. Currently, she is a Hebrew and Judaic studies teacher at Ilan Ramon Day School in Agoura Hills, California where she also mentors teachers and writes curriculum for grades pre-K through 2.
Ariela received the Sabati Patt Teacher of the Year Award in June, 2010 and the Milken Jewish Educator Award in October, 2014.
Ariela speaks Hebrew, English, Sign Language (for the hearing impaired) and Romanian.

ORIT SHAKARGHI
Coach

Having completed the 18-month TELEM program in June of 2018, Orit became an HATC coach working with schools throughout North America.
In addition, since 2012, Orit has been teaching Hebrew at Associated Hebrew Schools (AHS) where she also served as the Head Teacher of the Hebrew Department, at Danilack Middle School Hurwitz Education Center, mentoring and coaching Hebrew teachers, as well as special education teachers for all Middle School grades. She also serves as a resource teacher for all Judaic studies students. Orit graduated with Honors from Ben Gurion University with a BA in Education and Literacy and received an Honours Master of Special Education from Academic Studies Center, Or Yehuda, Israel, a Teaching Diploma in Special Education for K-9 in Beer Sheva, Israel, and completed the AHS coaching and mentorship training program.